Mikhail Chigorin (1850-1908), the first great Russian chess master, belongs to that select group of exceptionally strong players who did not quite succeed in winning the world championship. The defining moment for Chigorin came when he blundered away a completely winning position in the decisive final game of his second title match against Steinitz.
Chigorin remains universally admired for his creative and courageous style of play. He was not guided by Dr. Tarrasch's ‘general principles', prevalent at the time, but by the specific characteristics of each individual position. He would always play to win, not only by his famed dashing attacks but also by precise calculation of variations, purposeful manoeuvring and exploitation of positional weaknesses, artful defence and refined endgame play.
Today Chigorin is best remembered for his contributions to opening theory. He was the finest gambit player of his generation, but it is his pioneering work in defences to the Spanish Game and Queen's Gambit as well as various King's Indian formations that has been the most enduring.
The present book is a hugely expanded second edition of that published in 1987. Over two hundred extra games have been included, annotated by Chigorin and his contemporaries in addition to more modern grandmasters. The biographical part has been extended with hundreds of pages of material depicting Chigorin's turbulent life.